The Great American Read

Some of you have probably seen this and you may have seen the pilot episode even, but if not, KUED/PBS is hosting something called The Great American Read. It’s an eight-part series talking about American’s favorite novels. It has nothing to do with literary merit. In a national survey, these 100 books were listen as the top favorites.

Do I agree with all of them? No. But, I agree with a lot of them. And, reading is so subjective that it doesn’t matter whether I agree or not, to be frank. I’m just glad that my top three favorites are on this list. 😉

The fun part about this series is that they want to narrow down the list of 100 books to America’s most beloved book. Between now and October we can vote once a day for our favorite book(s). If you know me at all, you know which book I’m voting for–DUNE! If you want to vote, click here and scroll down.

Anyway, here’s the list of 100 books.

  1. 1984 by George Orwell
  2. A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole
  3. A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving
  4. A Separate Peace by John Knowles
  5. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith
  6. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain
  7. The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
  8. Alex Cross Mysteries (series) by James Patterson
  9. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
  10. Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
  11. And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie
  12. Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery
  13. Another Country by James Baldwin
  14. Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand
  15. Beloved by Toni Morrison
  16. Bless Me, Ultima by Rudolfo Anaya
  17. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
  18. The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Díaz
  19. The Call of the Wild by Jack London
  20. Catch-22 by Joseph Heller
  21. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
  22. Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White
  23. The Chronicles of Narnia (series) by C.S. Lewis
  24. Clan of the Cave Bear by Jean M. Auel
  25. Coldest Winter Ever by Sister Souljah
  26. The Color Purple by Alice Walker
  27. The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas
  28. Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
  29. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon
  30. The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown
  31. Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes
  32. Doña Bárbára by Rómulo Gallegos
  33. Dune by Frank Herbert
  34. Fifty Shades of Grey (series) by E. L. James
  35. Flowers in the Attic by V.C. Andrews
  36. Foundation (series) by Isaac Asimov
  37. Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
  38. Game of Thrones (series) by George R. R. Martin
  39. Ghost by Jason Reynolds
  40. Gilead by Marilynne Robinson
  41. The Giver by Lois Lowry
  42. The Godfather by Mario Puzo
  43. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
  44. Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
  45. The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
  46. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
  47. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
  48. Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift
  49. The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
  50. Harry Potter (series) by J.K. Rowling
  51. Hatchet (series) by Gary Paulsen
  52. Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
  53. The Help by Kathryn Stockett
  54. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to The Galaxy by Douglas Adams
  55. The Hunger Games (series) by Suzanne Collins
  56. The Hunt For Red October by Tom Clancy
  57. The Intuitionist by Colson Whitehead
  58. Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison
  59. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë
  60. The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan
  61. Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton
  62. Left Behind (series) by Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins
  63. The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
  64. Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
  65. Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry
  66. Looking for Alaska by John Green
  67. The Lord of the Rings (series) by J.R.R. Tolkien
  68. The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
  69. The Martian by Andy Weir
  70. Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden
  71. Mind Invaders by Dave Hunt
  72. Moby Dick by Herman Melville
  73. The Notebook by Nicholas Sparks
  74. One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez
  75. Outlander (series) by Diana Gabaldon
  76. The Outsiders by S. E. Hinton
  77. The Picture of Dorian by Gray Oscar Wilde
  78. The Pilgrim’s Progress by John Bunyan
  79. The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett
  80. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
  81. Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
  82. Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier
  83. The Shack by William P. Young
  84. Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse
  85. The Sirens of Titan by Kurt Vonnegut
  86. The Stand by Stephen King
  87. The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway
  88. Swan Song by Robert R. McCammon
  89. Tales of the City (series) by Armistead Maupin
  90. Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
  91. Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe
  92. This Present Darkness by Frank. E. Peretti
  93. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  94. The Twilight Saga (series) by Stephenie Meyer
  95. War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy
  96. Watchers by Dean Koontz
  97. The Wheel of Time (series) by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson
  98. Where the Red Fern by Grows Wilson Rawls
  99. White Teeth by Zadie Smith
  100. Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë

It’s a very interesting, eclectic list, isn’t it? Which one of these do you hope wins? Also, I’ve read 21 of these 100. How many have you read?

2 replies
  1. Jenny
    Jenny says:

    I’ve only read 28 and I don’t know how many more I actually want to read. Not many. I find I mostly don’t like “classics” so I doubt I’d be impressed. I do like that there’s a mix of old and new and a wide variety of genres.

    Reply
    • Jenni Elyse
      Jenni Elyse says:

      Yeah, I don’t really have a desire to read any more of them either unless I just happen to read more of them down the road. But, like you said, I do like that there are a wide variety of genres and a mix of old and new. 😀

      Reply

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